Saturday, October 27, 2012

Abolish the Mandatory Death Sentence

Referring to this piece of article, there was a comment to seek public consultation.

Therefore, even though I have stated my opinion before in a previous blog post, let me state my unreserved support for the abolishment of the mandatory death sentence for drug offences. I support the view that the law should not tie the hands of the judges. And it is not simply about saving Yong Vui Kong or the lives of any Malaysians, for that matter. It is about fairness to the judges and the alleged offenders. A person can and does possess the ability to repent and change him/herself for the better. He or she does not need to be sentenced to die at the first instance of offence. Give him/her a chance to change, especially drug mules. I have argued that very often they are tricked and cajoled into such offences. And very often too, they come from not very well-off family background. They often also lack education. It is the drug barons a.k.a. the drug lords who should be punished, not the young mules that they recruit. And even then, they should be given the chance too to transform themselves. You can keep them as long as possible in the prison but do not hand them the death sentence without giving them a chance to repent. I have argued in my previous blog post on this topic that the death sentence itself may be still necssary for hard offenders, who refuse to repent and transform and especially if their continued existence posed a threat to others. The death sentence should be reserved only for these repeat and stubborn criminal offenders, whereby no prisons is able to hold them. If there is a prison that can hold these people, the authorities can put them there. Yes, even if it is built in the middle of the sahara desert, where it is hot... almost like hell! Give them a taste of hell and then maybe, they can repent and truly regret their evil actions. But if we don't give them a chance, but send them to their death, they will never get the chance to experience the blessings of heaven and the spiritual goodness that all religions preach. We have to provide them the chance, but if they don't take it, that is their problem. If we don't provide the chance to them, that is our fault. It becomes our negative karma. In the future, others may also not give us a chance, even if it is just a minor mistake. Our bosses will scold us over a simple typing error, for instance. So, it is important not for us to sow such seeds of "not being given the chance to change for the better". Take the chance to lead the drug mules into a positive life, free from drugs. We can be "angels of positive transformation", instead of death punishers. For those who think abolishing the mandatory death sentence will result in more crime, well, I have suggested the authorities publicises actual life in prison environment (using actors) as well as show documentaries of criminals being whipped (with the faces hidden) on national television. Most people have never seen these punishments before and they don't feel the pain if they are not aware of it. Death is swift and immediate but suffering the whipping and shame of prison life is more unbearable. In return of abolishing the mandatory death sentence, the authorities could increase the number of whippings and increase the minimum number of years in prison. This will be the deterence.

Think about it and abolish the mandatory death sentence for drug offences. Let the judges have the freedom to decide what to punish the person after considering the weight of the offence and not tie his hands to only mete out the death sentence.

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